STEPHEN Laroche is in custody and facing murder charges in the 1993 homicide of 23-year-old Vicki Black.
He has been charged with second-degree murder in relation to Black’s death which occurred in Vancouver in March 1993.
“For Vicki and her family, I am pleased that we are able to announce criminal charges, 26 years after her death,” said Chief Superintendent Manny Mann, Officer-in-Charge of the BC RCMP Major Crime Section, on Friday. “No matter how many years pass by, police are committed to ensuring justice for victims of homicide.”
Mann said police routinely review files to determine if new techniques or information can help solve crimes.
“In this instance, a Vancouver Police Department review led to the file being referred to the Provincial Unsolved Homicide Unit – an integrated provincial team,” explained Mann. “Unsolved Homicide investigators were able to take the work that had been done by VPD to identify a suspect, and continued that work to gather enough evidence to support charges.”
“For the Vancouver Police Department it is important that those that commit serious criminal acts be held accountable, regardless of how long it takes. It is our hope that today’s charges will bring some semblance of closure to Vicki’s family and friends,” said Superintendent Cita Airth, Vancouver Police Department.
As a result of the investigation, Laroche was arrested in Oakville, Ontario, by the Provincial Unsolved Homicide Unit with the assistance of the Hamilton Police Service, and appeared in court in Vancouver on Friday morning. His next court appearance is scheduled for December 2.
Vicki’s family provided the following statement: “Vicki was a loving daughter, sister, mother, and friend. Her family wish to thank the members of the Provincial Unsolved Homicide Unit and all those involved in the investigation that has led to this arrest. The family will not be making any further statements. We ask everyone to respect this decision and our privacy.”